The complete Toronto line-up has finally been unveiled — Eugene Hernandez at indieWIRE has the long list of 312 films from 64 countries, 249 of those features.
Among the last round of announcements is the Paris Hilton documentary no one knew they wanted, Adria Petty’s “Paris, Not France,” a film that’s intrigued Spout‘s Karina Longworth into a link round-up; “The Illusionist” director Neil Burger’s post-Iraq War road trip film “The Lucky Ones,” with Rachel McAdams and Tim Robbins; a work-in-progress screening of “New York, I Love You,” Gotham’s answer to short film omnibus “Paris, je t’aime”; and the Coens’ “Burn After Reading,” fresh from its August 27th premiere as the opening night film at Venice.
Looking over the line-up, I do wonder — where the hell’s John Hillcoat’s “The Road”? It has a release date of November 14th and as shiny and festival-friendly a pedigree as a film can really manage, with Pulitzer Prize-winning source material, a lead whose last role was a gala premiere at Toronto in 2007 and got him an Oscar nomination, and a director whose previous film screened at Toronto 2005 — and yet, nothing. IMDb has, for a while now, had its premiere listed as taking place on September 29 at the New York Film Festival, but that’s hardly an official pronouncement, and it’s certainly not part of the NYFF line-up at the moment. I wouldn’t read forewarnings of quality into any of this, it just seem unusual that the Weinsteins wouldn’t take a prestige title like that out for the standard festival unveiling. Just look at how skinny and dirty Viggo is in the picture — give that man an award, 30 seconds of acceptance speech time and a sandwich.
At the LA Times over the weekend, John Horn checked in on the film, reporting that “Fox Searchlight passed on distributing the film, fearful that its apocalyptic plot and unspeakable atrocities were too demanding to sell to a wide audience. ‘People do rationalize’ about why ‘The Road’ is too difficult, says 2929 production chief Mark Butan, who nevertheless dismissed such worries as unfounded.”
[Photo: “The Road,” MGM, 2008]